Harrogate International Centre (HIC) director Angus Houston has quit his post after 18 months, citing a desire to seek fresh challenges.
Houston joined the venue in 2011 following a stint as executive director of Ricoh Arena in Coventry. He will be replaced in the short-term by deputy director of HIC Simon Kent, who joined the HIC in 2004 and has more than 30 years’ experience across UK event venues.
Houston’s tenure has been marred with a series of economic challenges following record losses at the HIC, which triggered a range of job cuts and outsourcing of other functions. The venue is owned by Harrogate District Council, which has seen its workforce halved in recent years.
The cuts came at the same time as the HIC embarked on a £13m expansion programme to improve its exhibition space.
“I came to support HIC during a difficult trading period. While the centre continues to trade in challenging economic circumstances, I believe good progress has been made and now is the right time to move to a fresh challenge,” Houston said in a statement.
Kent insisted it was business as usual at the venue, and thanked Houston for his contribution.
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Pictured: HIC topping out ceremony, 2011 (from left): John Hayton, Angus Houston, David Price and Councillor Don Mackenzie